Fort Wayne Mad Ants To Be Affiliated With Milwaukee Bucks For The 2008-09 Season
NEW YORK, Sept. 3, 2008 – The National Basketball Association announced today that the Milwaukee Bucks will become a new NBA D-League affiliate of the Fort Wayne Mad Ants for the 2008-09 season. With the affiliation, the Bucks can assign players in their first or second seasons in the NBA to the Mad Ants.
“We are very pleased to have the Bucks join the Mad Ants’ family,” said Mad Ants President Jeff Potter. “The Bucks – behind the leadership of John Hammond and new coach Scott Skiles – are a team on the upswing, and we hope that we can be an asset to help them develop their young players much as we did with Cheikh Samb and the Pistons this past season.”
The Bucks will join the Indiana Pacers and the Detroit Pistons as affiliates of the Mad Ants. In the 2007-08 season, the Bucks used the D-League by sending their first round draft pick, Ramon Sessions, to play for the Tulsa 66ers. Sessions became an instant star in the league and eventually played his way into becoming a starter for the Bucks. During his run with the Bucks, Sessions set a Bucks franchise record with 24 assists in one game, demonstrating how effective the D-League can be in helping young players develop and becoming ready for the challenges of the NBA.
The Bucks were previously one of the parent clubs for the Tulsa 66ers, but, as a result of the purchase of the 66ers by the Professional Basketball Club, LLC, owner of the Oklahoma City NBA franchise on July 31, 2008, the Mad Ants became Milwaukee’s affiliate. Oklahoma City is the third NBA team to own and operate an NBA D-League affiliate, joining the Los Angeles Lakers (L.A. D-Fenders) and the San Antonio Spurs (Austin Toros) as sole owners of their affiliates. Each NBA team has one NBA D-League affiliate to which it may assign players in their first or second NBA season.